Saturday, April 28, 2012

Bruscetta

Bruscetta (pronounced bru-sketta) actually refers to the bread, olive oil and garlic part of this antipasto dish. Dating back to the 15th century, it was a way to turn stale bread into a delicious snack. Italians enjoy many different toppings on their bruscetta, including roasted peppers, salami, tuna tonato (tuna blended with white beans, lemon juice and garlic) and even cheese. But nothing beats the flavour of perfectly ripe tomatoes, seasoned with salt and fresh basil. This bruscetta combination is a wonderful breakfast for a very hot day.

I have heard people dismiss bruscetta as nothing more than tomatoes on toast. But this is a far cry from the taste sensation of a properly made bruscetta. The key, in my opinion, is chosing the juiciest, most ripe tomatoes you can find, and combine them with beautiful fresh basil. As a breakfast meal bruscetta will leave you feeling like you have done something good for yourself today. I invite you to try.

Ingredients
Loaf of sour dough bread
3 tblsp olive oil
3 cloves of garlic
3 medium red tomatoes
1 tblsp olive oil extra
½ tsp sea salt
¼ tsp freshly ground black pepper
Half bunch fresh basil leaves, roughly chopped

1. Cut six 1.5cm thick slices off the loaf of sour dough. Use a pastry brush to lightly brush olive oil on both sides of each slice of bread.
2. Peel the garlic cloves and cut each one in half. Rub the cut side of the garlic all over one side of the oiled bread. Repeat for the other slices. Keep the garlic pieces for later.
3. Arrange the bread on a baking tray and place in on the middle shelf of the oven. Allow to cook for 5 minutes, or until the bread is lightly toasted.
4. Wash the tomatoes and cut each one in half. Use a soup spoon to scoop the seeds out of the middle of each tomato half. Throw the seeds away. Dice the de-seeded tomatoes into 1cm squares.
5. Place the diced tomatoes in a bowl with the extra olive oil, salt, pepper and the basil leaves, roughly torn into smaller pieces. Mix to combine then divide the tomato mixture evenly between each of the toasted slices of bread. Decorate with a sprig of basil and serve immediately.

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